By EDDIE OSIFELO
SOLOMON Airlines has recorded a $12 million loss from January to August this year.
This is a turn-around from the $17 million loss the state-owned enterprise (SOE) recorded last year.
Manager Finance, Peter Soqoilo told reporters yesterday that things are hard but there are some positive signs and these are driven by additional charters.
“We have generated $20 million over and above what we have projected.
“The weekly cargo flights have been generating good revenue,” he said.
In addition, Soqoilo said from June with this “Yumi Tugeda Package”, is showing some increase in their domestic revenue.
Meanwhile, he said the A320 aircraft is currently in Singapore to undergo its normal C-Check and will cost Solomon Airlines $4 million.
“Last week, we paid half of it to the service providers in Singapore.
“To ease our cashflows, we have leased two of our twin outers to Air Kiribati, generating fixed cost of $50,000 ($25,000 us) and $220 US per hours,” he said.
Soqoilo said the lease is generating USD$195,000 a month.
Chairman of Airlines Board, Frank Wickham said while they try to reduce ongoing loses, they also have a need for cash flow.
“Over the recent past we have support from Australia and New Zealand to help towards costs and also hard work to maximize revenue make cash improve.
“But we still need to focus on our cashflow towards end of year and next year,” he added.
Wickham said the Chief Executive Officer, Bret Gebbers has worked hard to maintain relationship with creditors and leasers.
“A lot of success to do with goodwill on both sides, creditors, big suppliers and those lease to us,” he said.
Furthermore, as part of reducing cost, Solomon Airlines had removed 58 staff last September and maintains 220 staff.
Soqoilo said there are some areas because of safety requirement, they have to recall some staff in particular areas.
He said currently the company took 20 percent cut from every employee, including the cleaners to CEO since last October.
Manager Marketing, Colin Sigamanu said they have enough cabin crews to serve Dash 8 and maintain international service.